PA Students Enhance Communication Skills with PT, Nursing Students

By Purnell T. Cropper | May 8, 2015

During the last week of April, students in Arcadia’s Physician Assistant program collaborated with physical therapy students and nursing students to discuss unique aspects of their chosen fields and improve interprofessional communication skills. On Arcadia’s campus, PA students and PT students gained insight on how both professions could work together to improve patient health. Presentations on the unique role of their disciplines and case studies demonstrating real-life challenges gave students a better understanding of different approaches to health care.

Arcadia’s PA students also traveled to Cecil College in North East, Md. for a workshop with the college’s nursing students. While the PA students are first-years preparing for clinical rotations, the nursing students are near graduation. The workshop provided both groups with activities to facilitate good communication, as students reviewed admission and discharge reports, commenting on whether the instructions provided would make sense to different professionals who might care for the patient.

These workshops were first coordinated last year and were the brainchild of Dr. Michael Dryer, chair of the Department of Medical Science and Community Health and associate dean of the College of Health Sciences, and his wife, Christy Dryer, director of Nursing & Health Professions at Cecil, who both aim to encourage teamwork among the future practitioners.